Sils slip into gear to take the points
By David Brett
Suttons ‘boom cannons’ silenced as Sils take charge
Sils entertained Sutton Coldfield 4’s in the latest fixture of their Warwickshire Division 1 campaign in a reversal of a rather feisty affair earlier in the season which saw disputed decisions, cards, last minute drama and an official complaint unjustly levied. To compound matters coach Jamie Fleet was unavailable with Matt Fell rising to the challenge in his absence.
Sils started the game with a fast pressing approach as Sutton settled into their game play which consisted of the whole of the back line missing out their midfield as they ‘boomed’ clearance after clearance directly into the channels for their fast forwards to run down. Sils soon settled into the game with a much more free flowing and confident approach and with their young and talented front line the less mobile Sutton defenders were faced with an uphill struggle to keep them at bay. The flying Georgina’s, Dalby and Jones, were causing problems whenever they approached the opposing D and backed up by Caroline May who was back to her best the hockey was starting to look as though there was some purpose behind the plays. Although the attacks didn’t always materialise with a shot on goal Sutton were being pressed further back in to their own D and to release the pressure they reverted to big hits to reach the forwards which in the main were picked off by the hard working midfield or smashed against the Sils defence who were quick to marshal any attacking threats out of harms way. This was a confident display by Sils which hasn’t been seen all season and it was only a matter of time before goals hopefully came although the closest they came in the first half was hitting the post from a short corner.
The first half ended surprisingly at 0:0 despite all the chances that Sils had created, a quick confidence booster at half time seemed to work as within 4 minutes of the re-start Sils took the lead a short corner was played around the D with Samantha Cooper latching onto the ball to fire home. This seemed to take a lot of pressure off the team as they played with a more relaxed and confident feel. Everyone was covering and chasing back with substitutes being rolled on and off to freshen up any flagging positions.
By this time the forwards who were inter-changing on a regular basis were causing Suttons defenced immense problems and the holes that were appearing were allowing the Sils midfield to drive through at every opportunity. As time progressed yet another foray up the wing by Jones enabled her to drive into the D and as she started to run out of space Rebecca Leaning sprinting in from midfield to support collected the deft slip to score from close in and allow some breathing space for Sils.
Sutton did have a few attacks of themselves as they started to chase the game but were limited to few direct strikes on goal although there was one heart stopping moment as a shot flashed across the goal missing the back post by inches and the short corner they did create late on was charged down by the hard running Ruth Dovey and they never really had a look-in afterwards.
A thoroughly deserved victory and although it’s taken nearly all season Sils at last displayed the hockey they are capable of with fast inter changing forwards good linking up and running off the ball to create space. When pressed the defence were up to everything that came there way. Great performance now to continue in the same vein for the remainder of the season.
MoM: Caroline May, back to her best linking up with her wingers, good attacking capabilities and getting back for her defensive responsibilities.
DoD: Captain Sam, after falling over several times one was found to be sat on the pitch hitting it frustratingly with her stick, too much time with baby Bakewell we thinks….